Recruitment agency expands in the North East

Recruitment agency expands in the North East

8th October 2013


A FAST-growing recruitment agency has moved into new £1.7m headquarters as it prepares to expand its workforce by 25 per cent in the next 12 months.

Solutions Recruitment has taken the significant step to buy an historic five storey building in the centre of Newcastle as a statement of intent.

Since the owner-directors acquired the business in a management buy-out four years ago it has grown from 12 people to 48, with a further dozen jobs to be filled.

And at a time when the recruitment sector has been hit hard by the economic downturn, Solutions' turnover is soaring towards £13m.

"We have continued to grow while others have shrunk, consolidated or closed altogether," said Michael Grayson, who bought the business along with fellow accountant Ian O'Brien and Lee Andrews, who had worked for Solutions for 20 years.

"Solutions was probably seen as a sleeping giant but now we are very much awake and causing a stir in our sector.

“After buying the business, we made a conscious decision to alter our strategy.
Previously our main focus had been white collar, permanent recruitment. Observing that market conditions had altered considerably, we deliberately moved into the temporary, blue collar Industrial market to bolster our operations.”

"We now have a number of sole supplier agreements with key clients, and increased volume and turnover. We're attracting experienced consultants and have been able to develop specialist teams across a number of sectors,” added Michael.

As well as industrial, construction and driving positions, the agency recruits in commercial, legal, finance, IT, accountancy, engineering, technical and executive.

"We have grown far quicker than even we anticipated," added Lee. "Everyone here is very passionate and we do things differently to other agencies, which is what has attracted the likes of Greggs, Port of Tyne, Port of Blyth, Brakes Brothers and Paradise Foods to us.

"Our consultants have the freedom to run their departments like their own business, supported by marketing and business development resources tailored to their sector, whether that's social events or information seminars, anything to suit their particular clients."

Growth forced the company's move from its previous address in Hood Street, Newcastle. The purchase of Yorkshire Chambers, in Pilgrim Street, gives it the room to expand further, provide facilities for clients and generate rental income.

Solutions has taken up 8,000sq ft of the 15,000sq ft grade II listed building, with the rest let to tenants.

Ian added: "It is a beautiful building with fantastic facilities. We've plenty of space, from interview rooms to a training and seminar room with break-out area and a boardroom, all of which we offer to clients for their use free of charge as part of our ethos of giving back.

"We will hold events here ourselves, hopefully including something for the Entrepreneurs' Forum, of which we're members. Their events are characterised by quality, and our building lends itself perfectly to that."

Solutions also has satellite offices in Blyth and South Tyneside.

News in October